On paper and form, India is the best team of the tournament so far. They haven’t sweat in the competition and still won 3 games against teams like South Africa, Australia, and Pakistan. This should be an easy game for India, and they should win it comfortably.
India is the top team along with New Zealand in this world cup, both the teams have not lost a single game, and both are playing today but against different opposition. India has some injury concerns, with Dhawan and Bhuvi are out, they have to select a new playing XI. It will be interesting to see if Pant finds a place or Karthik gets a chance to play his first World Cup.
India’s best chance to score over 400 runs in this competition, not that they can’t score against other teams but playing against Afghanistan should make it an easy task, provided they bat first.
The exciting thing for the fans in India is that the Indian team will be playing in the new orange jersey today.
Afghanistan needs to pull up its socks else; it will be too late for them. They haven’t performed up to the expectations of their fans, except in their first game of the tournament, which was against Sri Lanka. Afghanistan is struggling with the forms of their star players, Rashid and Nabi. Both of them are going through the bad phase of their career, which means that others have to pitch in and win the match for Afghanistan.
Weather will be dry, sunny, and warm with some patch of clouds during the day.
Players to watch out
Rohit Sharma has scored 319 runs in just three innings; he would be eyeing to score another big hundred in the tournament. If he sees the first ten overs, then a fourth double hundred will be on its way (of course if India bats first).
Gulbadin Naib, the captain, has to lead from the front, to save the team from the humiliation of another defeat in the competition. He needs to pick the best XI and even if that means to drop the underperforming star players.
India v Afghanistan in ODIs:
Overall: Matches 2, India Won 2, Afghanistan Won 0, Tied 1
World Cup: Yet to play
Recent Form (most recent first): India W NR W W L, Afghanistan L L L L L
ICC Rankings: India (2), Afghanistan (10)
If India wins the match against Afghanistan, then it will be their 50th win in the World Cup. Only two other teams, Australia (67) and New Zealand (52) have won more matches in the World Cup than India.
Virat Kohli needs 96 runs to become the third highest run scorer for India in World Cup after Tendulkar and Ganguly.
Hardik Pandya needs four wickets to reach 50 wickets milestone in ODIs.
India: Virat Kohli (capt), Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, Shikhar Dhawan, MS Dhoni (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, Rohit Sharma, Kuldeep Yadav.
Afghanistan: Gulbadin Naib (capt), Aftab Alam, Asghar Afghan, Dawlat Zadran, Hamid Hassan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Hazratullah Zazai, Mohammad Nabi, Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Najibullah Zadran, Noor Ali Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Rashid Khan, Samiullah Shinwari.